Typhoid Mary–Villain or Victim?

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Typhoid fever was responsible for the deaths of many people in the 19th and early part of the 20th century. Associated with poor sanitation, it was mostly confined to the lower classes, who… Continue reading

The Spanish Borderlands: End of an Era

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Between 1492 and 1821, Spain held dominion over vast regions of the New World. Being the first Europeans to establish a stronghold, being first to claim territory, being rich, and being a naval… Continue reading

Opium, Hypocrisy, and Amnesia

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Those who don’t know history are destined to repeat it. Edmund Burke (1729-1797) This much-abused quote is frequently tweaked to say “ignore” or “forget” history. Sometimes people simply choose to ignore it, particularly… Continue reading

Laura Secord, Canada’s Paul Revere

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If the War of 1812 was America’s Forgotten War, then Laura Secord is the war’s forgotten heroine, at least in the United States.   Most Americans forget that in the late 1700s and… Continue reading

The Spanish Borderlands: The Mission Trail

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Though it’s dominance of the Borderlands ended long ago, Spain’s influence remains throughout the region. Things as diverse as architecture, clothing, place names, and national parks are testaments to the culture that once… Continue reading

The Surveyor in Snowshoes

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Wandering around the great medieval cathedral of St. Magnus in Kirkwall, Scotland I came upon an unusual monument among the 14th century stones and 18th century funerary inscriptions. The life-sized statue depicted a… Continue reading

America’s Forgotten War

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The War of 1812 stands out in American history as a disappointment to most, a forgotten war as soon as one managed to finish 8th grade history class. It doesn’t have the same… Continue reading

Living History: Bunratty Castle & Folk Park

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I have just returned from a wonderful trip to Ireland with the Texas Master Chorale. We sang in lovely venues and visited many beautiful natural and manmade sites. Though the series on living… Continue reading

Tracking the Great War

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Historical tourism is big business. While U.S. citizens have tended to travel to Normandy and sites associated with the Second World War, it became obvious to me during my travels that folks from… Continue reading

Big Jock McCluskey and the Buffalo Plaid

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I sat in a meeting a few weeks ago with my new red and black buffalo plaid jacket lovingly placed over the back of my chair. When I glanced around the room at… Continue reading